Let’s face it. Finding love in any capacity is challenging. But when you’re a digital nomad, it can sometimes feel impossible. So when you decide to uproot and travel for a living, how do you find that special someone?
According to a recent study, the number of digital nomads in the United States has been steadily increasing over the last three years. At the end of 2021, there were 15.5 million digital nomads in the United States alone. And with the recent interest in remote work, that number will continue to increase.
A March 2022 survey conducted by OnePoll, on behalf of Exodus Travels, revealed that 33% of Americans admitted to having a vacation romance, while 23% said they married someone they met while traveling!
From dating apps and travel clubs to hostels and volunteering, digital nomads have many different options to meet other people. Below are popular and creative possibilities for finding love when on the move.
Try a Dating App
Most digital nomads don’t spend an extended period in one place, making it difficult to date locally. If you’re constantly on the move, finding love through a dating app or website may be an option. According to Statista, there were 43.4 million dating app users in the United States in 2020 and that number is expected to increase to 53.3 million by 2025.
Below are a few tips for using dating apps effectively and safely.
Stay Clear of Hookup Apps
Not all dating sites are created equal. Each has its own unique audience. To find a long-term relationship, avoid dating apps such as DOWN, which are known for facilitating casual hookups. Other dating apps that have created a hookup culture include Tinder, OkCupid, and Hinge.
How to Avoid Catfishing Scams
Catfishing occurs when someone creates a fictitious online persona to harass, scam, or steal someone else’s identity. It’s a practice that’s been around for a long time and has been made popular by online dating. According to the FBI, 24,000 people fell victim to romance scams in 2021, losing close to $1 billion dollars. Here are a few red flags you need to watch for:
- Refuses to talk on the phone
- Will not engage in video chatting
- They won’t meet up with you
- You can’t find them on the internet
- Conversations about money
These are just a few common signs to watch out for when searching for someone to fit your nomadic lifestyle with. Remember, these scam artists know how to play with your emotions.
Finding the Right App For You
Users looking for serious relationships tend to subscribe to dating apps such as Match.com, eHarmony, or the premium version of an app like Coffee Meets Bagel. A recent study revealed that only 2% of dating app users reported spending money on online dating within the last 12 months. Perhaps, if a person is willing to spend money to find love, that may indicate they are looking for something serious.
Join a Travel Club
A great way to meet new people who love travel is through group travel through a travel club. Many types of travel clubs include trips for solo travelers, singles, and specific age groups. Traveling with a travel club allows you to go on multiple trips with the same people so you can get to know each other in a safe environment.
According to Psychology Today, when you travel together, “you see a new side of a person as he leaves behind his routines and is pushed out of his comfort zone.” You also learn what others are interested in, their travel style, how they react to new situations, and if you make a good travel team.
Stay at a Hostel
A type of shared travel accommodation, hostels by nature, promote social interaction. Imagine sharing a room with other travelers versus being alone in a hotel. It’s a great way to meet single, like-minded travelers when you’re on the move.
Hostels usually have common rooms where everyone can get together to chat, have a beer, and play games. As well, some hostels set up group tours and events around town. Trusted trip planning apps and sites like HostelWorld make it easy to find the right type of hostel for you.
Volunteering for a cause we care deeply about opens up the opportunity to meet people with the same passion. Volunteer International HQ says, “couples that volunteer together stay together.” That’s because you see other people in a more meaningful setting where you may laugh and cry together.
You will also get a taste of what it’s like to work side-by-side with other people. Volunteering with others is a great way to learn more about the caring side of an individual. It promotes a special kind of connection that you can’t find anywhere else.
Use a Coworking Space
Coworking spaces are shared work environments used by digital nomads, remote workers, freelancers, and anyone else without a dedicated office space. Coworking spaces can be found worldwide in big cities, near beaches, in the mountains, and within neighborhoods.
Many of these spaces hold networking and social events where you can get to know other occupants. You can attend happy hour events, lunch and learns, take day trips, comedy nights, and book clubs. And if you find yourself surrounded by other nomads, you can even go and explore the area together at the end of the workday.
The most important thing to remember as a digital nomad is that you are not alone! If you’re serious about finding love, you have options. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there safely to try and find the right person. You may be pleasantly surprised by what you discover!
Alexandrea Sumuel is a travel writer and the founder of the Wander With Alex travel blog, where she provides vacationers and travel enthusiasts with trip ideas, travel guides, news, and itineraries. She travels to experience, eat, and explore-- and, on occasion, escape! Alex’s mission is to help people travel a little easier.